One of the weirdest trends is where people pay enormous amounts of money for clothes items that look well-worn or are discards. We know that people are willing to pay more for so-called ‘distressed’ jeans that have holes in the knees to suggest that they are well worn when in fact the holes are created by the manufacturer. Rusty Blazenhoff writes about a more extreme example of this, where an Italian luxury brand company named Golden Goose charges $530 for a pair of sneakers that are worn down and held together by tape.
TThis is an example of ‘poverty chic’, something that rich people indulge in. It is well known that people who are struggling financially or are poor are the ones who try to dress as well as they can, to hide that fact from casual acquaintances. It is people who are rich who can afford to adopt the scruffy look because everyone knows they are rich. If anyone does mistake them for being poor, it is a source of humor to them. It is a form of condescension, a way of saying, “Look at me. I am so rich that I can dress like this.”